César Aira

Image courtesy of Noemi Aira

César Aira is a translator as well as the author of around 80 books of his own – so far. He declared that he might have become a painter if it weren’t so difficult (‘the paint, the brushes, having to clean it all’). He was born in Coronel Pringles, Argentina, and moved to Buenos Aires in 1967 at the age of eighteen and was, by his own admission, ‘a young militant leftist, with the notion of writing big realist novels.’ By 1972, after a brief spell in prison following a student demonstration, he was writing anything but.

His writing is considered to be among the most important and influential in Latin America today, and is marked by extreme eccentricity and innovation, as well as an aesthetic restlessness and a playful spirit. He is without a doubt the true heir to Jorge Luis Borges’ literature of ideas. He has been called many things: ‘slippery’ (The Nation), ‘too smart’ (New York Sun), ‘infuriating’ (New York Times Book Review) and a writer of ‘perplexing episodes’ (New York Review of Books). He’s also been called ‘one of the three or four best writers working in Spanish today’ (Roberto Bolaño) and the ‘most original, shocking, exciting and subversive Spanish-language author of our day’ (Ignacio Echevarría). Patti Smith was ‘quickly seduced’ when she read The Seamstress and the Wind, and admits that seeing him at a writer’s conference: ‘I was so excited at his presence that I bounded his way like a St. Bernard’.

Praise for César Aira

  • ‘Aira writes at full tilt, going where the words take him (a style he calls “constant flight forward”) so that reading him is dizzying.’ Jane Housham, The Guardian
  • ‘Once you’ve started reading Aira, you don’t want to stop.’ Roberto Bolaño
  • ‘Hail César!’ Patti Smith
  • ‘Aira is firmly in the tradition of Jorge Luis Borges and W. G. Sebald.’ Mark Doty, Los Angeles Times

More Information

  • You can watch César Aira talking about his love of writing in this video from the Louisiana Literature Festival, and read Aira’s US publisher, Barbara Epler of New Directions, talking about Aira’s work here in the New Yorker.
  • And Other Stories will be publishing no fewer than five of César Aira’s books between 2016 and 2019. You can read more about the first four of these: The Seamstress and the Wind, The Little Buddhist Monk, The Proof and The Lime Tree on our book pages. Watch out for the fifth book in 2019.

4 Aira covers

Comments are closed.

Powered by WordPress | Deadline Theme : An Awesem design by tg